KINGS VALLEY -- The Luckiamute Watershed Council, in partnership with the Benton Soil and Water Conservation District, has secured funding and is beginning a project to control invasive and noxious plants along the Luckiamute River.
This effort in particular is focused on finding and eliminating Japanese Knotweed, and replacing it with native plants and trees, in the Wildwood Road area of southern Polk County and in the Kings Valley and Hoskins area of northern Benton County.
Knotweed is an invasive weed that takes over stream banks, floodplains and gravel bars, making it impossible for native plants to grow. This results in increased soil erosion, reduced plant diversity, and a reduction in wildlife habitat. In addition, knotweed can interfere with agriculture, block access to the riverfront and reduce property values.
Japanese Knotweed spreads readily by seed and can also sprout from small pieces of branch or root.
Because knotweed spreads so easily and quickly, finding and removing all of it along the Luckiamute River is essential, noted Gail Oberst of the Luckiamute Watershed Council.
Landowners along the river can participate in a voluntary program at no cost that includes licensed contractors removing the knotweed.
For more information on the program and to learn how to participate: Luckiamute Watershed Council, 503-838-8804; firstname.lastname@example.org.